October 7th

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Hi All,

Well, it certainly didn’t feel like the 1st week of October at the weekend, with temperatures pushing up to twenty degrees plus in the south of England, accompanied by some lovely sunshine. Walking and Blackberry picking in a T-shirt in October, smart, but this week we’re going to get a  taste of where we should be temperature-wise, as a cool trough pushes down from Scandinavia, accompanied by cold northerly winds and for a day (Thursday) at least I think we’ll struggle to hit double figures !!!..You can see the transformation in the image below….

OctTrough

That cold trough will end up sticking around for 5-6 days forming into a ‘blob’ of cooler air that’ll sit over us and drag moisture in from the continent, so cooler and more unsettled is the outlook. Longer-term I can see a milder, westerly airflow pushing in next week to bring back that warmer air, but probably with rain…sunshine and showers like…

General Weather Situation

For Monday we have a pleasant day for most with a dull, but warmer start to the day than Sunday and for England and Wales I expect the sun to break through later to give hazy sunshine, high teen temperatures accompanied by light south-westerly winds. For Scotland we have rain in the north-west, part of a front that’s currently skirting the west coast of Ireland, but later on this afternoon it’ll make landfall on the west coast of Munster and Connacht and then slowly push eastwards across Ireland, dissipating as it does so. At the same time that rain in Scotland will sink south to affect the north of England / Lakes area overnight.

For Tuesday that front sinks south and west to bring light rain to the west coast of England and Wales. Further inland, a similar day to Monday with good temperatures, light south-westerly winds and some pleasant, hazy autumn sunshine. Ireland should have a dry day, dull most of the time, with maybe the sun breaking through on the east coast of Munster, Leinster later.

For Wednesday, we have the start of the change and it’ll be felt almost immediately in Scotland where the temperature will struggle to hit double figures during the day and they’ll be some rain, pushed along on an initially westerly wind, that change round to northerly during the day. Further south, (and for Ireland as well) we’ll keep see a gradual drop in temperature, so mid-teens, rather than high teens will be the order of the day and they’ll be some rain along the north western coast of England and across Leinster, Munster, though amounts will be light. Into the evening, the wind will complete its transition round to the north and that’s when things start getting chilly.

For Thursday, we wake up straight away to the change, most noticeable will be the moderate to strong northerly wind that’ll peg temperatures back to barely double figures even though the day itself will be bright and sunny across the U.K and Ireland, so wrap up well and dig that buff out from the clothes cupboard cos you’ll need it believe me.

For Friday, we have another change as that blob of cool air sinks south and that changes the wind around from the north to the north-east. The consequence of this is that temperatures will pick up a little so we’re talking low double figures for most and also the easterly / north easterly wind may well drag some rain off the continent to affect the south-east and east of the country from the afternoon onwards. Let’s add that caviat though, continental rain is hard to predict, so keep an eye on things closer to the time for a more accurate rainfall forecast.

The weekend looks like being unsettled with the ever-present threat of rain from the continent, this will be most pronounced over the south-east, south coast and Midlands areas on Saturday. That rain may though push a little further north on Sunday, but further north and west, it’s likely to stay dry, though dull. Temperatures will be low-mid teens and still with that cool north-easterly wind.

Weather Outlook

That ‘blob’ of cool air is projected to sit right over the U.K and Ireland for the start of next week (see the animated GIF at the top of the page) and that’ll mean a recurring pattern of north-easterly winds pulling across continental rain, possibly though further north and into Scotland for the start of next week. As we move into Tuesday that cool trough will be moved aside by a deep Atlantic low, so south-westerly winds (great waves :)) and milder air from mid-week, next week, but we will get rain and if anything I think that rain will become heavier towards the end of next week as that deep low pushes in. It’s the tropical storm season in America and we’re likely to see more of these Atlantic lows pushing in, in my mind, so I think a more unsettled outlook for the 2nd part of October is likely, but since they’re situated further south than normal due to the jetstream position, I think they’ll be accompanied by milder air.

Agronomic Notes

Last week I talked a lot about disease and disease pressure and it’s fair to say it continued unabated through the week and into the weekend. Late last week we had extremely mild night temperatures accompanied by high air moisture levels, so ideal forGuttationFluid disease development. You only have to look at the amount of Mushrooms and other fungi around at the moment and also the level of disease pressure off green, on fairways, aprons, sportsfields, etc, it is very high….driven on by this barmy weather, courtesy of a peak in the jetstream….This pic (below) of my weather station late last Thursday was typical….Bearing in mind that the Dew warning had been showing since 9 p.m and you’re likely to be dewing your greens at say 6.30 a.m, that means the plant is sitting wet with dew for 9 1/2 hours and if you take an hour to dewy, it’s probably closer to 10 1/2 hours of leaf wetness…

WeatherStation041013

 Pluses….

We will get some respite this week because the dramatically lower temperatures expected on Thursday will slow down the development of active disease, without a doubt. We will also lose that humidity so there’s another driving factor behind disease development that will decrease at the same time.

Minuses…

The flipside concerns what will happen to the efficiency / speed of uptake of fungicide applications made this week and particularly close to Thursday because that dramatic drop in temperatures will really shut down growth and hence plant nutrient / fungicide A.I uptake, so if you’ve got active disease, either spray soonest this week or add some low-temperature N to the tankmix, provided its compatible of course 🙂

Growth..SoilTemp031013

Grass growth has been amazing over the last week or so, pushed on by unusually high day / night temperatures and a soil temperature sitting +4°C higher than the same time last year (15.7°C vs. 11°C)

If we use GDD calculations we have GDD daily totals of 12 at the moment, whereas this time last year, they were only 4, so that means the grass plant is able to grow 3 times as much at the moment. To give you an idea how abrupt this week’s temperature transition is going to be, I expect a GDD of 1.5 on Thursday, so in other words growth will come to a grinding halt for a few days.

Plant Nutrition…

If you’re planning to apply nutrient this week, unless you an apply today or first thing tomorrow, personally I’d skip it and just apply iron to keep the colour through the transition and then wait for the weather and the grass plant to settle down again before making a nutrient application. This won’t take long, probably the early part of next week before it’s receptive again I reckon…

Worm activity…

I expect to see a lot of worm activity with the arrival of unsettled weather over the coming weekend  and into next week, so maybe if you’re timing a Carbendazim application, you may want to take this into account…

 Feedback…

Thanks for all the feedback from last week’s blog, all comments are appreciated, we don’t have to always agree, for sure life is a balance, we’re all entitled to our opinion :)…so cheers, it does make doing this blog easier and worthwhile for me..

All the best…

Mark Hunt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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